By: Marisa Herman Associate Editor
Defending champion Scott McCarron, John Daly and dozens more of the best PGA Tour Champions will return to the Old Course at Broken Sound this month for a 54-hole competition for a $1.8 million purse.
With a new name, The Boca Raton Championship, the event will return for the 12th year from Feb. 5-11.
The week will kick off with the Christine E. Lynn Women’s Health & Wellness Institute Pro-Am on Monday, a draw party on Tuesday, a double shotgun pro-am on Wednesday and Thursday and championship rounds Friday through Sunday.
Since Allianz pulled out as the sponsor for the event, the event organizers have been searching for a new title sponsor.
“We are entering a new era in this championship,” tournament director Eddie Carbone said during the Boca Raton Championship Media Day last month. “We are working hard to secure a new sponsor for 2019 and far beyond. We’re very confident about that.”
Paying for the tournament
The city and the Greater Boca Raton Beach and Parks District as well Palm Beach County Sports Commission kicked in extra funding to make sure the event stayed in Boca. Sallyport came in as a presenting sponsor as well with $360,000 in funding.
“It was our honor to step up to the plate this year and save this tournament,” Mayor Susan Haynie said during the media day event. “It’s one of the best weeks in the city. This is too special of an event for us to lose. It was an honor to write the big check to keep it going and we are honored to have Boca Raton in the name of the tournament.”
The city previously spent $375,000 on the tournament. An extra $1 million was allocated to the tournament split by the city and district. The city will also fund $100,000 in service support for things like police presence. The PGA paid an extra $1.2 million to cover the purse of the event.
Total, the city spent $975,000 in a one-time extra payment to the tournament. Tournament Director Carbone said he is working on securing a title sponsor for the 2019 event. He said prospects will be in attendance at the event this month.
For the extra money, the city and district receives sky boxes on the 18th hole and commercial spots to air on the Golf Channel as well as naming rights.
Councilman Scott Singer cast the sole dissenting vote for the additional funding of $500,000 from the city.
“I have too many concerns to support this,” he said.
Sallyport is a global company that specializes in supporting military operations within complex environments. This tournament they will be the Title Sponsor of the tournament’s Military Outpost on the 16th green – now named the Sallyport Pavilion.
All current military and veterans (with ID) will receive free admission to the Boca Raton Championship and have access to the Sallyport Pavilion, where they will receive complimentary food and beverage.
“When this partnership was presented, we knew it was a perfect fit with the Sallyport organization and a great opportunity to give back to our veterans,” said Victor Esposito, President and Chief Executive Officer of Sallyport. “As a military-friendly, top-10 employer, more than 50 percent of Sallyport’s U.S. National employees are veterans. Sallyport is excited to be a part of this prestigious event and allow our active military and veterans an opportunity to enjoy a week with the greats of the game and with the PGA TOUR Champions.”
The practice rounds are free and championship tickets for Friday, Saturday and Sunday cost $20 a person. Children under 17 enter free and seniors over the age of 70 enter for free.
Money raised benefits Boca Raton Regional Hospital.
For more information about the Boca Raton Championship, ticket packages or corporate sponsorships, call 561-241- GOLF (4653) or visit www.bocaratonchampionship.com.